Real Madrid don’t even have one of CIES’s five most valuable La Liga players

Florentino Perez of Real Madrid (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)
Florentino Perez of Real Madrid (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images) /

Real Madrid have a highly impressive group of young players, but arguably only one of them has established themselves as a true breakout star.

The CIES Football Observatory periodically releases lists of player transfer values, and, lately, Real Madrid haven’t been placed prominently on such lists. In some cases, there are snubs, of course, but looking at the most recent edition, it’s hard to say that Los Blancos were truly hard-done-by.

Looking at their latest value update, Real Madrid have only one player in La Liga’s top 10 in terms of projected transfer value and not a single player inside the top five.

The man in the top 10? Fede Valverde, who was recently named by Transfermarkt as the most valuable center midfielder in the whole world.

CIES, however, seems to think Frenkie de Jong and Saul are more valuable, so both players end up in La Liga’s top five with Valverde ranked ninth. If anyone thinks Saul or de Jong are better, they are free to then ponder why Valverde has not lost a Clasico or Derbi against them and has often outclassed both, especially de Jong, head-to-head.

CIES’s list shows just how badly Real Madrid need an Mbappe or Haaland

Despite my misgivings about where Valverde is ranked (or Clement Lenglet for that matter, who the hell would pay 80 million euros for him?), I can’t argue against the larger, harsher point. Real Madrid don’t have anyone, aside from maybe Valverde, who stands out as a must-have, superstar player for the next decade.

Eden Hazard is a superstar, yes, but he has been injured for long stretches and only has a few years of top-level football left in him. I can say the same exact thing about Sergio Ramos, Luka Modric, Karim Benzema etc.

Rodrygo Goes, Vinicius Junior, and Takefusa Kubo rate highly on CIES’s list, but there’s a reason why they are all behind Jules Kounde, Ansu Fati, Mikel Oyarzabal, and Joao Felix (I’ll respectfully gloss over Pedri being ranked fourth). Those four La Liga youngsters all have more production to stand on and far more consistency, especially Oyarzabal and Kounde. The young Real Madrid attackers are talented, but, with the possible exception of Rodrygo whose biggest issue may just be Zinedine Zidane yo-yo’ing his playing time, are living off the word “reputation”.

Next. The 5 players Real Madrid should have never sold. dark

If you want to see why Real Madrid so desperately need to sign young superstar players in the upcoming transfer windows, provided they can afford one, then look no further than the CIES’s latest imperfect, but still damning, list.